The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Wednesday delayed the revival of the stalled $6-billion programme for Pakistan. The global lender said that there have been deviations from the policies agreed in the last review, partly reflecting the fuel and power subsidies announced by the government in February
In a press release issued after the completion of ongoing talks in Doha, the IMF said that its mission led by Nathan Porter held both in-person and virtual discussions in Doha, Qatar with the Pakistani authorities during May 18-25 on policies to secure macroeconomic stability and support sustainable growth in Pakistan.
“The mission has held highly constructive discussions with the Pakistani authorities aimed at reaching an agreement on policies and reforms that would lead to the conclusion of the pending seventh review of the authorities’ reform program, which is supported by an IMF Extended Fund Facility arrangement,” the statement said.
It added that, “Considerable progress was made during the mission, including on the need to continue to address high inflation and the elevated fiscal and current account deficits, while ensuring adequate protection for the most vulnerable. In this regard, the further increase in policy rates implemented on May 23 was a welcome step.”
“On the fiscal side, there have been deviations from the policies agreed in the last review, partly reflecting the fuel and power subsidies announced by the authorities in February. The team emphasized the urgency of concrete policy actions, including in the context of removing fuel and energy subsidies and the FY2023 budget, to achieve program objectives,” the statement added.